Don't Drink the Tea. Think With the WE.

CHART: High School Graduation Rates in “Right-to-Work” States Clearly Lower than States Where Unionism is Welcome

An interesting, though dated map is making its way around the web that shows graduation rates across the country versus state “Right-to-Work” status. The graphic likely resurfaced, despite showing information from 2002-2003, because of the Chicago Teachers Union strike and the ongoing assault on public education. Even though the Right-to-Work image (below) was obviously created by an anti-union outfit (notice the use of the term “forced unionism state”), it still shows something quite pro-union when placed next to the graduation rate graphic (above).

Tennessee (“Right-to-Work”) and Kentucky (not “Right-to-Work”) border each other geographically and have very similar socio-economic demographics. Yet, Kentucky does a much better job of graduating its high school students. The data here speaks for itself, with a clear-cut patten of low graduation rates in “Right-to-Work” states. To be sure, “Right-to-Work” status isn’t the only factor in this graduation disparity, but it is obviously an important one.


One Comment on “CHART: High School Graduation Rates in “Right-to-Work” States Clearly Lower than States Where Unionism is Welcome”

  1. Chaz,
    as you know, correlaton does not equal causation. It *could* be that “right to work” status contributes to graduation rates, but it could also be that states with higher graduation rates have better educated citizens who are more likely to unionize. Or some other factor might acccount for both. You would see very similar maps if you charted state per-pupil funding for education, corporal punishment in schools, teen birth rate, poverty, obesity, religiosity, sweetness level of tea, bsc football championships, or a host of other factors. See for example:


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